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There were quite a few very large calibre gun installations at the st margarets, and bearing in mind the hilly terrain, how did they get such large calibre ammunition to the batteries, and  how was it moved from the magazines to the guns?

The gun sites are open to the public, but its a puzzle as to how they shifted 15" shells around? 

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Posted (edited)

usually a railway system was used to move the ammunition around,  lots of the old fortifications/emplacements,magazines  have bits of track still visible set in the floor.

Found this IWM painting of one of the 14" Dover guns showing the large shells on a narrow gauge railway alongside  what looks like standard gauge track

https://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/11419

Edited by Nick Johns

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The Battle of Britain Memeorial site at Capel Le Ferne  is on the site of an 8 inch battery above Dover. There are sound mirrors and various observation posts along the cliffs in the area sa well.

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Wanstone farm battery?

Wanstone1A.jpg

 

5118311359_21f292c5d4_b.jpg

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The rail complex serving the gun batteries including Wanstone are covered here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Mill#Martin_Mill_Military_Railway

The additional link to the Cross channel guns has good photos of the various pieces of ordnance (and show rail lines)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dover_Strait_coastal_guns

The lines were standard gauge as rail mounted cranes (those used for accident recovery) were the only means of doing barrel changes.

The lines around Dover and up to Canterbury were used for the recovered/refurbished railway guns that had been held in storage after WW1 and pressed into service.

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thank you-I never knew they used small tugs and trolleys! but it does make sense. National Trust now owns large areas at st margarets and its good to see gunsites Jane and Clem now being excavated and restored

 

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NT have also opened up the amazingly preserved Fan Bay Deep shelters where the Gun crews lived, they are a long walk along cliff path but worth a visit

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